PEOPLE AROUND TOWN
How long have you lived in Myrtleford?
I was born here and grew up in Buffalo River. I left Myrtleford to pursue a career as a nurse, travel the world and experience city life. My husband Adam and I returned to raise our kids here in 2003. Adam and I went to school together and were both very keen to settle back with our girls. My parents live here and my Nan is here too. What is your job? I’ve been a Registered Nurse for over 20 years. I spent the first half of my career working in Intensive Care. I moved in to the primary health sector in 2010, working as a District Nurse and then as a Chronic Disease Coordinator in general practice. I currently work at Standish Street Surgery and at Gateway Health Medical Centre in Wangaratta. Adam and I also run an Electrical Contracting business based here in Myrtleford.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
Working as a nurse in general practice is fantastic. I get to work as part of a team and everyone supports each other. I see clients who have been diagnosed with a chronic condition, this may be diabetes, heart disease, lung disease or arthritis. My role varies depending on the client’s needs, health education, coordination, access to services and supports. Each day brings something different and Standish Street Surgery is an incredibly busy practice.
What brought you to this role?
After many years working in the acute (hospital) system I have become passionate about community health and understanding the health needs of the community. The role of nurses in general practice is evolving, patients are being diagnosed with life-long chronic conditions which require a whole team approach.
Are you involved in any other groups or clubs around town?
I am a clinical adviser for the Murray Primary Health Network, this role allows me to consult on health issues relevant to our community and hopefully lead to better services and supports for communities. Until last year I ran the annual Daffodil Day stall here in Myrtleford which the community gives amazing support too. Our business provides sponsorship to local sporting clubs. What do you love about living in Myrtleford?
I love the scenery and access to the high plains. I love each season and the produce that comes with each one. I love driving to work in 5 minutes and my family living close by. I love being able to take my kids for a drive and showing them where I grew up, swimming at Lake Buffalo and walking Reform Hill. What is a significant current issue that Myrtleford faces?
Lack of consistent community mental health services and supports. The current funding schemes are short term and this leads to inconsistent care and difficulty keeping trained clinicians in our area. Myrtleford residents often have to travel for counselling and specialist services such as psychiatry. There can also be large out of pocket costs which make accessing support near impossible for some members of our community. What’s the most significant world issue to you?
The challenge of finding balance and pace in what is now a fast, connected world. We are exposed to events happening anywhere, any time and it’s harder to find time to relax and zone out. This issue of social media and its effect of our children is a big one for me, along with the constant exposure to sugar filled, processed foods which are leading to so many long term health issues.
If you could get anyone in the world to come visit Myrtleford who would it be and what would you show them?
Jamie Fraser from the Series Outlander. I can see him wandering around our beautiful hills in his kilt - I’m a little obsessed.
COMMUNITY MINDED: Jade Cartwright, pictured with her daughter Hayley, at the Myrtleford Daffodil Day fundraiser last year.